Top 10 Austin stories of 2012

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by JIM BERGAMO / KVUE News

khou.com

Posted on December 31, 2012 at 11:31 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jan 1 at 8:15 AM

AUSTIN -- From the fall of Lance Armstrong, to the battle over testing students in public schools, many stories have made 2012 a memorable year.

Here's KVUE's top 10:

#10 - Feds raid Yassine Enterprises
In March, federal agents raided and seized nine downtown Austin nightclubs owned by the Yassine Brothers. 

In October, two of the brothers, Mike and Hadi, were found guilty of money laundering. 

#9 - The passing of Austin icon, Leslie Cochran
Leslie Cochran was know for wearing a tiara and a skirt, or thong wearing. Many viewed him as the epitome of "keeping Austin weird." Many felt the city lost a piece of its soul with his passing back March.

#8 - UT bomb threat
September's bomb threat on the UT campus. All classes were canceled that Friday morning after a man claiming to have ties to Al Qaeda called the university and warned bombs would go off in 90 minutes. Despite questions about the threat's credibility, university officials took no chances.

#7 - Payne Avenue gas explosion
The Payne Avenue gas explosion that killed 43-year-old Renald Ferrovecchio. The single father first reported a gas leak nearly two months before his house exploded. Texas gas company was cited for three violations before and after the explosion. 

#6 - DKR dies
The passing of UT football coaching legend Darrell K Royal at the age of 88. Royal was perhaps best known for his one liners and creating the "wishbone" football formation but fans and former players say he will be missed for much more.

#5 - Central Texas drought continues
November went down as the driest in history since 1897 as Central Texas is considered two years into an historic drought.  Lakes Travis and Buchanan are down 42 percent.

#4 - Rick Perry's unsuccessful run for president
It was at KVUE back in august 2011 when the governor first let it be known he was running for president. By the time January rolled around, it was apparent the governor was no longer a player in the race.

#3 - Lance Armstrong is stripped of titles
At number four-- Lance Armstrong being officially stripped of all seven of his Tour de France titles.
In October, the International Cycling Union also banned him from professional cycling for life.  The move came just days after Armstrong stepped down as chairman of the Livestrong Foundation he founded in 1997.

#2 - Formula 1 comes to Austin
Austin's first Grand Prix was by most accounts a roaring success both on and off the track. The event was projected to bring in nearly $27 million in tax revenues. Race organizers said 60 percent of tickets were sold to people from outside Texas, and of those, 15 percent were international visitors.

#1 - The top story of the year, is also among the most heartbreaking.  APD Senior Officer Jaime Padron was gunned down inside a North Austin Wal-mart. In a powerful display, Central Texans lined miles of I-35 during Padron's funeral procession.

 

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